Garner Holt Productions, Inc.

16 April 2018

Garner Holt Productions is Moving to a New Headquarters Amidst Major Expansion

(SAN BERNARDINO, CA) Garner Holt Productions, Inc. (GHP) is moving to a new, state-of-the-art headquarters building in Redlands, California.  Garner Holt, GHP’s founder and president, announced the company’s plans to relocate in anticipation of unprecedented expansion and new product offerings.  GHP is the world’s largest designer and builder of animatronics for theme parks and attractions around the world.  It’s also a major supplier of special effects, show action systems, and original creative design for clients like Disney, Universal, Knott’s Berry Farm, Hershey, Mattel, Nike, Lockheed-Martin, and dozens more.


 “My company celebrated its fortieth anniversary last summer,” Holt said.  “For all that time, we’ve been moving forward and getting bigger and being able to serve our clients better.  We’re moving into a building almost triple the size of our current studio.  That means we can make a lot more magic happen for audiences all over the planet.”


Holt founded GHP in his parents’ garage.  He later moved his business into a series of increasingly-large buildings.  The new 120,000 square foot building is more than twice the space afforded by GHP’s current set up on a four-building, multi-acre campus.  Holt has been looking for a new property to bring all elements of GHP’s output—from the creative design studio where new concepts are developed, to the various engineering, machining, CNC, plastics, paint, electronics, and other efforts—under one roof.  “A single building setup will enhance efficiency for all departments,” Holt said.


With demand from international clients, new and existing theme parks, the military, and other opportunities in diverse markets, the new, much larger headquarters will be able to accommodate a significantly larger volume of work.


Holt has longed focused on expanding his company’s technical capabilities through the use of cutting-edge tools and machinery.  He attributes much of GHP’s continued success to always staying at the forefront of new technologies and design and production methods.  “We were the first animatronics company to own a KUKA industrial robot for sculpting purposes,” he said.  “GHP was also the first to have sophisticated CNC equipment like multiple Mazak machining centers, waterjets, and rapid prototype production.  We’ve had a robust in-house 3D printing capability for many years.”  These tools allow GHP to meet client needs with greater cost effectiveness and creative excellence.  The company is recognized around the world for being the leader in staying “on character” for IP-related projects.


“The new building with is custom layout and production efficiency will allow us to provide clients with a seamless creative and production experience,” Holt continued.  “That’s something not available anywhere else at the level of quality GHP is famous for.”


At the same time, GHP will increase its staff significantly over the next year. Over the next three years, Holt anticipates more than doubling its annual output, including hundreds of animatronics and complete show production from sets and scenery to special effects.  GHP is looking for machinists, fabricators, designers, artists, electronics and control experts, and project leaders to assist in handling the large volume of work on the horizon.  The company will expand its current impressive “one-stop-shop” capabilities with the ability to handle multiple “E”-ticket level attractions simultaneously, from design through total show production and installation.


Although the company’s core focus will continue to be creating the finest animatronics and themed attraction experiences available, the new headquarters will allow a foray into educational products and services, something Holt has been eager to do for some time.  Carefully-curated programs—including tours of the design and production facility—for schools will help students learn about the art and technology of animatronics through STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics)-oriented activities, including custom GHP-designed construction kits.


“We’re going to share the same type of thinking and skills that go into our animatronics, combining GHP’s form of art and technology,” said Holt.  “With so much focus on robots and where technology is going, I wanted GHP to share some of the incredible and diverse work and thinking that it takes to make realistic mechanical figures.  It’s so important to plant that spark of imagination and technical skill in students.”  The educational offerings will initially target students in the K-6 levels, with high school and college courses and items to follow.


In addition to its new corporate home, GHP will be part of two new museum exhibits in Redlands in the coming months: a retrospective on the company’s first forty years at the San Bernardino County Museum, and a multi-media show at the Lincoln Memorial Shrine.

Posted by Carole Mumford